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july 17, 2012 - july 30, 2012


A Lineup of Must-See Acts | festival fashion | Local Bands You’ll Love


july 17, 2012 – july 30, 2012


GET ...this or that 7 ...seen 8 ...close 10 ...cultured 12 ...pretty 14 ...out 16 STYLE 20


music matchmaker 22 set list 29


22 For our Music issue, electro-pop songstress Casey Desmond, Freezepop front woman Liz Enthusiasm, hip-hop standout Moe Pope, and Mean Creek rocker Chris Keene helped us recreate some iconic album art, from our Weezer-inspired cover shot to Desmond’s take on Bowie’s Aladdin Sane above. See them channel another fab four — and check out other stars of the local scene — in “Music Matchmaker” on page 22. Cover and above photo by Danny Kim of Visceral Photography. Desmond’s hair by Elle Powers of Shag and makeup by Jessie Ammons-Carswell.

Letter from the Editor

If you really want to know someone, steal that person’s iPod. After all, few things are more revealing than musical taste. Favorite songs can become our personal anthems, and we sometimes share them with others to convey a sense of who we are. (You probably know people who post their favorite indie songs on Facebook as though they’re soul<4> 7.17.12

baring revelations. Note: we’re not condoning this.) Browse through the artists in someone’s music library, and you’ll probably have a well-rounded idea of his or her identity — and perhaps discover that the same person who owns season tickets to Symphony Hall also has a soft spot for the Britney Spears Oops oeuvre. (Who says you can’t love the Pops and pop?) It’s impossible for me to disassociate many of my own memories from music. I’ll never forget that my first self-purchased CD — remember those? — was Weezer’s self-titled debut (affectionately known as the Blue Album), the inspiration for this issue’s cover. I use Madonna eras to contextualize major life events. (“Let’s see, the Erotica album had just come out, so it must have been around 1992.”) And I have iTunes playlists dedicated to everything

food coma 37 5 courses 38 stuff it 39 liquid 40 RESIDE 42 SEX 43 FLASH 44 brian coleman’S STUFF 46

from high-school party jams to (bad) European dance tracks that remind me of a (great) vacation taken with a best friend. Music doesn’t just define who we are and where we’ve been; it’s the soundtrack to an ongoing, evolving life story. But where do you go to discover new music that will become meaningful to you? The outlets grow scarce. (Though our sister radio station, WFNX, will continue to stream online, the recent sale of its FM frequency to corporate conglomerate Clear Channel reminds us that good tunes are increasingly hard to find through traditional means.) So to help you scour the sonic landscape, Ariel Shearer pulled together “Set List” on page 29, a week-by-week guide to must-see live shows playing now through the end of 2012. And on page 22, Miles Howard plays “Music Matchmaker,”

suggesting cool local bands that pair well with nationally known acts you already love. There’s plenty more music content inside, from a revealingly ribald chat with singer-songwriter Matt Nathanson (see page 10) to an interview with a hip-hop-loving PR guru with an awe-inspiring vinyl collection (see page 46). I think there’s something here for everyone. After all, in the words of a now-classic Madonna song that I distinctly remember dancing to at several Boston nightclubs that no longer exist, “Music makes the people come together. Yeah.” See? I’ve no shame in my musical memories. The accompanying cowboy hat? Well, that’s a different story. Scott Kearnan Editorial Director @TheWriteStuffSK

Editorial Director: Scott Kearnan Senior Managing Editor: Jacqueline Houton Design Manager: Janice Checchio Staff Writer: Miles Howard Food Editor-at-Large: Louisa Kasdon Fashion & Beauty Editor-at-Large: Lauryn Joseph Contributing Writers: Kara Baskin, Marissa Berenson, Renata CertoWare, Cheryl Fenton, Jeannie Greeley, Meghan Kavanaugh, Heather Bouzan McHugh, MC Slim JB, Luke O’Neil, Erin Souza Contributing Photographers: Natalia Boltukhova, Lara Callahan, Kelly Davidson, Michael Diskin, Kim Gray, Tim Gray, Eric Levin, Gina Manning, Melissa Ostrow, Chris Padgett, Joel Veak Party Photographers: Derek Kouyoumjian, Erica Magliaro, Natasha Moustache, Michael Young Interns: Luke Milardo, Hilary Milnes Vice President, Sales and Business Development: David Garland Vice President, Print Media Sales: Marc Shepard General Sales Manager: Sean Weymouth Senior Account Executive: Luba Gorelik Account Executives: Nathaniel Andrews, Chris Gibbs Advertising Operations Manager: Kevin Lawrence Traffic Coordinators: Jonathan Caruso, Colleen McCarthy Director of Marketing and Promotions: Brian Appel Interactive Marketing Manager: Lindsey Mathison Director of Creative Operations: Travis Ritch Advertising Arts Manager: Angelina Berardi Production Artist: Kelly Wight Online Content Coordinator: Maddy Myers Senior Web Developer: Gavin Storey Director of Finance: Scotty Cole Circulation Director: Jim Dorgan Circulation Manager: Michael Johnson STUFF Magazine is published by the Phoenix Media/ Communications Group Chairman and Publisher: Stephen M. Mindich President: Bradley M. Mindich Senior Vice President: A. William Risteen Vice President, Integrated Media Sales: Everett Finkelstein Director, Interactive Media Sales: Brian Russell Senior Account Executive of Integrated Media Sales: Margo Dowlearn For advertising rates, call 617.425.2660. For editorial inquiries, call 617.536.5390. Subscriptions: Bulk rate $89/year. Bulk-rate postage paid, Boston, MA; allow 10 days for delivery. Send name and address with check or money order to: Subscription Department, STUFF, 126 Brookline Avenue, Boston, MA 02215 • Copyright ©2009 Stuff Magazine LLC, 126 Brookline Avenue, Boston, MA 02215, 617.536.5390. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission, by any method whatsoever, is prohibited. Printed by Cummings Printing, Co.

617. 457. 2626 200 Stuart Street | 7.17.12 <5>



Maybe we’ve just been watching too much Real Housewives, but on a hot summer day nothing sounds more refreshing than blowing off our responsibilities, gathering a gaggle of our dearest, and sipping champagne until the sun goes down. (And then smashing the glass over a friend’s head. It’s a form of affection.) So we plan to play serious hooky once The Reserve opens inside The Langham, Boston (250 Franklin Street, 617.451.1900) next month. A result of the Langham’s massive lobby renovation, the Reserve will become the hotel’s third dining spot, joining BOND and Café Fleuri. It’s being touted as a “champagne lounge” with an especially extensive selection of bubbly. If you’re a classy broad — say, the type who would wind up on The Real Housewives of DC — know that the Reserve will also launch a traditional Tiffin afternoon tea, served by staff who have been specially trained in hoity-toity tea-handling etiquette. The rest of us? We’ll make like those girls from dirty Jersey, order up some New England– and European-inspired nibbles (like Maine lobster sliders and gazpacho), and keep the Cristal flowing. On that bitch’s head, a’ight.

They say lightning never strikes twice. How about five times? This summer, hotel hotspot W Boston (100 Stuart Street, Boston, 617.261.8700) is energizing its nightlife scene with the Electric Summer Music Series. Largely curated by Boston Phoenix music editor Michael Marotta, the quintet of live performances and dance parties will kick off on Thursday, July 26, with a 10 p.m. show from experimental electro-rock trio Into the Alpha in the W Lounge. Then on Thursday, August 9, is an evening inspired by The Donkey Show, the American Repertory Theater’s discoera reimagining of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream; expect a Midsummer-themed menu in the W’s refined Market restaurant, plus “mini performances” by Donkey cast members in the W Lounge at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. For the full series lineup, including details on DJ-driven parties at the W’s nightspot Descent, check out


Hollywood blockbusters are often clichéd — and so are the movie posters that market them. (Want to promote a romantic comedy for the “modern woman”? Just surround a hapless Reese Witherspoon with shopping bags and anonymous hunks.) Maybe that paint-by-numbers predictability explains why we love the subversive approach of the “Tribute to Blockbuster Movies” exhibition assembled by Boston’s Super Precious Gallery (, an online contemporary-art gallery that tackles a fresh theme every month or so. July’s celluloid-inspired cyber-show gathers cool, colorful, and competitively priced ($20!) prints, many by Boston-based artists. The amusing images riff on favorite genre tropes and flicks like Jaws, E.T., and The Dark Knight Rises. (Picture an old-timey poster advertising the showdown between Batman and Bane as though it’s a bareknuckle boxing match.) Hang these by your big-screen, and it’s like a personal cineplex. Just add popcorn.


Ready to blow the speakers at your summer block party? Fire up Glory, a thumping nonstop mix tape (“mix mp3” doesn’t sound as cool) just released by KarmaloopTV and the Future Boston Alliance, Karmaloop founder Greg Selkoe’s nonprofit. With Glory, DJ Brek.One strings together original mixes of music by 34 Boston artists. (We can’t imagine many other circumstances in which Passion Pit, Donna Summer, Aerosmith, Armand Van Helden, and Karmin could so seamlessly share a stage.) It also marks the world premiere of a new single from Dorchester-based DJ and recent STUFF player Clinton Sparks: “Watch You,” a collaboration with Italian house producer Benny Benassi and ubiquitous rapper Pitbull. For your free download, visit <6> 7.17.12






Even as technology advances, many audiophiles still adore the tactile sensation and distinctive sound of vinyl. Sadly, not all records have stood the test of time — and even if you saved some LPs from the careless slip of the needle, good luck finding a player at Best Buy. But thanks to Pennsylvania artist Jeff Davis, the beat goes on in the form of this upcycled 45rpm clock ($45). For the record, the striking timepiece features lasercut numbers, aluminum hands, and a clear acrylic stand. Hit up Gifted (2 Dartmouth Street, Boston, 617.716.9924) in the South End to get yours before time runs out. Tick tock!

or that...

Instead of watching the seconds tick by until the weather turns cold again, toast the laid-back days of summer with a set of four record coasters ($14.95). Bearing the name of a fictitious band called the Watermarks (creators of the hit single “Keep It Clean”), these clever coasters will protect your furniture from beer rings — so long as your roommates actually remember to use them. Get yours at Paper Source (1810 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, 617.497.1077), and give these babies a spin.

— Susan Johnston

top photo by janice checchio

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GETSEEN …at the Victim Rights Law Center’s Shining Star Gala

Amber Shonts, model with Maggie Inc. Amber was an absolute stunner as she mingled in a couture gown by Firas Yousif. She wore the handembroidered dress, made from vintage Chinese silk, with matching pink heels. Firas Yousif has been designing for 20 years and recently opened a shop on Newbury Street. The Baghdad native has had a soft spot for Boston ever since he earned his MBA at Boston College. This gown is a departure from Amber’s off-duty style: a flowing maxi dress topped with a blazer is her signature look.


Samuel Monsour, executive chef at JM Curley His deconstructed summer suit — all from H&M — paired perfectly with his Sebago boat shoes and laid-back personality. Appropriately enough, this chef calls his style flavorful. His personal aesthetic is classic American, simple, and thoughtful — just like JM Curley’s menu. He shops most often while visiting his wife’s native Stockholm, where he looks for simple but standout pieces. Back in the States, he tries “to find clothes as cool as that.”

Naia Kete, singer

The evening’s entertainer — a former contender on The Voice — stayed true to her roots in a maxi dress gifted by a friend and a headscarf and heels from her mother. “Style is another form of selfexpression and how I present myself to the world,” says the Northampton native, who now lives in LA. “This look is authentic to me; I try to be as honest as possible.” Her hair is a huge part of her earthy style. “I haven’t cut my hair in 22 years. I never wanted to cut it, because I want to walk the walk.” To her, that means dressing, eating, and living as naturally as possible.

Nick Mathews, marketing/ community manager at Uber We chased Nick around the party to ask about his take on the traditional suit. He wore an Express vest, shirt, and pants with wingtip sneakers (so cool!) by LA-based brand Generic Surplus. He creates his “edgy frat style” with Levi’s jeans and vests and will find any excuse to wear a bowtie. Nick sees Boston as fairly refined, but he thinks we could step it up if we moved out of our comfort zones. “My biggest aspiration for Boston is to become more connected and be more open to sharing cool ideas.”

Guitar Stars

Ever been curious about where rock-god guitarists find their tricked-out axes? Maybe you’ve noticed Depeche Mode’s Martin Gore and his star-shaped shredder, finished with sparkling silver paint and a fretboard inlaid with pearl stars. Or maybe you caught Boston’s boys of Aerosmith on their summer tour and wondered where Brad Whitford got his mahogany guitar, whose metallic-green body boasts bright licks of orange flame. Turns out the Hub is a haven for musicians searching for custom instruments. We’re home to First Act, a Boston-based manufacturer that specializes in cranking out handcrafted guitars, drums, and handheld percussion devices. Catering to marquee names and under-the-radar prodigies alike, First Act allows you to place custom instrument orders and buy limited-edition copies of previously made products like Lola, a cherry-red love letter to the classic Gibson SG that boasts stronger pickups and a specially carved heel for added comfort. Its pricing starts at $1,000, but if your budget only accommodates mass-merchant price tags, take heart: the brand even collaborated with Maroon 5 front man and longtime client Adam Levine to design 222 by First Act, a line of instruments sold at Target and billed as the “biggest line of signature musical products ever created for mass retail.” But if we had our druthers, we’d plump for a one-of-a-kind model — with, say, a double-length rosewood neck, triple magnetic humbuckers, and a personal paint job. At that rate, it’d probably be shaped like a dollar sign. To scope the merch, share your specs, and get a price quote, visit

— Miles Howard

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GET SEEN PHOTOS BY melissa ostrow; text by erin souza

starts friday, july 20 This is the one—where tons of new fall fashion arrives already on sale and only for a limited time. Shop in store or find even more at—but hurry! prices go up august 6 BURLINGTON, NATICK MALL, NORTHSHORE, SOUTH SHORE PLAZA


JULY 20–22

Throughout our entire store and at on all Nordstrom credit and debit card purchases. Double points do not apply to travel units or other rewards. International orders excluded.

GETclose ...with SingerSongwriter Matt Nathanson Matt Nathanson has been in the music business for two decades, cranking out soulful folk-rock tunes like “Come On Get Higher,” often used to set the tone on shows like Scrubs and One Tree Hill. (We’re also partial to “Laid,” his rollicking, risqué James cover that popped up throughout the American Pie flicks.) But before he played cities across the country, Nathanson grew up in Lexington, Massachusetts. He recently returned to the area for an intimate show at BOKX 109 in Newton’s Hotel Indigo, part of the Mix 104.1 “Mix Lounge” concert series. We nabbed him for a fun chat about everything from instigating make-out sessions on The Bachelor to oral sex in the olden days. Ever consider moving back to Massachusetts? No . . . I’ve lived in San Francisco for about as long as I lived here, and I think California suits me a little better in terms of weather. I love the seasons when I can visit them. Although sometimes I think I want to move to New Hampshire and live in the woods and snowshoe around. But I’m feeling pretty California-y. There are milder seasons. My blood has thinned; I’ve become a total wimp. Gene Simmons was an early musical influence. Any others? It was all of KISS, not just Gene — although he did spit fire, which is badass. KISS was my band. . . . From there I got into hair metal for a long time. U2 was a band that straddled the line. Growing up near Boston in the ’80s, as it still is now, it was almost a prerequisite: you gotta love the Celtics, the Sox, the Patriots, and U2. So I went to see U2 . . . and it was lifechanging. Seeing them perform in Boston is like a religious experience. I’ve seen them play elsewhere, but watching them in the old Boston Garden was like watching them play to all their friends. It was the most tingling experience you could ever have. You recently tweeted admiration for Kanye West. Is he your guilty pleasure? I was listening to his last record, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. You’re not supposed to confuse the art with the artist, and he makes it really easy because he’s not very likeable in his persona as a star — but man, he’s so good that it just doesn’t matter. But no, I don’t have guilty pleasures musically. I have television guilty pleasures: bad early-2000s dramedies. I’m embarrassed by my love of Dawson’s Creek. I like Dawson’s Creek because I can live vicariously through other people, instead of my own painful life. I was in love with Joey. . . . She could have shanked my mom, and I would have been like, “Yeah, Joey Potter, way to kill my mom!” Do you think your recent performance on The Bachelor, where you serenaded Ben and Lindzi on a private date, influenced the heavy petting and make-out sesh that ensued? It was a lot like being the music for porn. I felt like a fluffer. It was really strange. It was just these two <10> 7.17.12

people getting it on. And we just played, and if we leaned into something a little funky, they really got into it. I don’t know if you’ve ever been there when people are macking, but it’s not fun; it’s not something you want to do every day. I thought they were just going to be dancing, but then they started to get their lick on. How is your newest record, Modern Love, different from past records? It was produced more like records in the ’80s, like the Tears for Fears records and the INXS record, where the production is as big a deal as the song. We were trying to get that feel where you hear the song and it kind of feels like it was beamed in from the

future, but back in the 1980s. Back to the future. You wrote the single “Modern Love” for a female friend who dubbed herself “nobody’s girlfriend.” Why did that strike you so profoundly? I always thought that was a great line. Yeah, powerful woman! You don’t need to be anybody’s girlfriend — men suck, culture sucks, and it teaches everybody to like Jersey Shore. So I say go: be your own girlfriend. If modern love doesn’t cut it, do you consider yourself an old-school romantic? I don’t think they had oral sex back in the olden days, so I’m not that guy. . . . I’m definitely a modern person.

— Renata Certo-Ware

ALWAYS ENJOY RESPONSIBLY. ©2012 Anheuser-Busch InBev S.A., Stella Artois® Beer, Imported by Import Brands Alliance, St. Louis, MO

GETCULTURED Wrestling with Stereotypes

Televised wrestling is rich pop-cultural terrain, a world that has yielded a wealth of curious characters, from the one-man brand Hulk Hogan to the Slim Jim-snapping Randy Savage. But dramatic portrayals of wrestling are usually less compelling than the real thing (probably because the sport is already an exercise in savvy scripting). Case in point: Jack Black’s cinematic stink bomb Nacho Libre, which left us with spandexclad nightmares and little interest in re-entering the ring. But this month, Boston’s Company One offers an artful exploration of televised wrestling with The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity, a comedy from playwright Kristoffer Diaz that promises to skewer racial caricatures, steroid-riddled athletes, and whimsical notions of the American Dream. At the heart of the melee is Puerto Rican wrestler Macedonio Guerra (Ric Engermann). He’s formidable, but he doesn’t approach the brawny authority of the game’s top gladiator, Chad Deity (Chris Leon). Insecure and desperate to dent that champion’s dominion, Guerra plucks a charismatic Indian-American kid named Vigneshwar Paduar (Jake Athyal) from the streets of Brooklyn and grooms him to take Deity down. But Guerra’s boss, in the interest of generating audience-grabbing melodrama, suddenly decides to reinvent Paduar as a gleefully offensive Arab-world antagonist called “The Fundamentalist” — complete with fake beard. Guerra’s plan spirals out of control, and meditations on racial stereotypes, globalization, and the manipulative ways of the American media ensue. Subtlety may not exist within the wacky world of Chad Deity — but then, it’s not present in the real wrestling world that Diaz satirizes. Well before popular WWE “bad guy” John Layfield started goose-stepping and heil-ing around the ring in 2004, the sport had often served up embarrassing displays of stereotypes. (We’re looking at you, Iron Sheik.) The medium remains ripe for roasting, and critics have championed Diaz’s comic take on America’s most over-the-top sport. Chad Deity was named the Best New American Play at the 2011 Obie Awards, and it snagged a Pulitzer nomination to boot — no small accomplishment for a play punctuated by body slams. Behold every bone-crunching headlock during Company One’s production, which runs from July 28 through August 25 at the BCA’s Calderwood Pavilion (527 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.426.5000). For tickets ($15–$42) and show times, visit

— Miles Howard

To DIY For

Allston. It’s the one Boston borough where you can reliably find backyard barbeques hopping enough to resemble block parties, basements that double as under-the-radar live-music venues, and the largest population of innovative Etsy sellers. (Okay, we don’t have the statistics to back that up, but we’re assuming.) And this summer, the rambunctious ’hood will celebrate its resourcefulness with the third annual Allston DIY Fest. On Saturday, July 21, Ringer Park will be transformed into an eclectic arena of live music, art, and workshops for attendees of all skill sets. You’d think community-building socializing would be commonplace in a neighborhood as diverse as Allston, but according to Matt Altieri — one of the fest’s organizers — getting to know your neighbors, whether they be across the street or across a concert hall, can be challenging. “Two years ago, upon moving to Allston, I observed a lot of cliques,” Altieri says. “For instance, you’d have punk fans and indie-rock fans gravitating toward their own types. With DIY Fest, the goal is to find common ground by providing all these great musicians, workshop leaders, and artists with an open venue for their crafts.” According to Altieri, the 2012 DIY lineup is the most diverse yet — and we find it hard to disagree. You can kick off the day with an in-depth Hula Hooping 101 lesson led by expert undulator Beau Lyle. Then Herbal Medicine Box’s Annabelle Ho will offer a tutorial on brewing kombucha, the fermented sweet tea that’s popular in health-food circles. Throw in a workshop on crocheting with plastic bags, a rousing appearance from <12> 7.17.12

feminist collective the Permanent Wave, and two music stages for electric and acoustic acts, and DIY Fest becomes a priority-A experience. Plus, all visitors are encouraged to flaunt their talents for the crowd. So if you’re a washboard-rapping champion, get your metal buffed and ready. If you’re a seasoned painter, pack a canvas and some striking colors. Who knows? Maybe our own dream of performing Adagio for Strings on the nose flute will finally find fruition. For set times, visit

— M.H.

bottom photo by ethan long

GETpretty Tanning Tones

Since its inception in the 1960s, sunless tanning has provided a safer alternative to basking in damaging UV rays. But as the Oompa-Loompas of Loompaland and the Jersey Shore alike have taught us, you’ll look more silly than sexy if you give yourself an utterly unnatural shade. Luckily, “spray-tan technology and [sunless-tanning] products have come a long way,” says Ed Ferreira, manager at Forever Tan in Newton. “Two to three years ago, the technology wasn’t really there — hence the dreaded orange look. But nowadays we have more advanced, coloring-specific technology to look natural.” For an effect that’s more sun-kissed than Sunkist, you’ll want to tailor your sunless-tanning approach to your hair color and skin tone. So with the peak of shorts season upon us, we’ve gathered tips that will allow redheads, blondes, and brunettes to fake bake without fear.

— Lauryn Joseph


At home: Brunettes’ skin tones can vary widely, so an adjustable self tanner is a great option. Xen-Tan Perfect Blend ($43 at actually has a dial on the bottle, allowing you to customize your tan and control just how dark you’ll go this season. At a salon: Brunettes can pull off darker tans more easily than blondes and redheads, so most spray-tan machines — like Mystic Tan or Ferreira’s pick, California Tan — may be used panic-free. With California Tan, you can determine the darkness of application on a scale of one (lightest) to three (darkest). “Paler brunettes will want to stay at level two, while olive-skinned brunettes can explore the three to create a more intense bronze,” advises Ferreira.

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At home: A too-dark tan can turn a blonde from golden goddess to tacky trollop. So we love Lorac TANtalizer Body Bronzing Luminizer ($32 at Sephora), which provides a golden glow with a touch of sheer shimmer.   At a salon: “Light-skinned blondes should stay at levels one and two when using a booth like California Tan,” says Ferreira. Blondes should proceed with caution before stepping it up any further; fortunately Forever Tan provides free consultations so you can discuss which level will create the most natural look for you.


At home: Redheads often have lighter, freckled skin tones that demand a bit more discretion. To avoid turning your skin the color of your hair, begin with a tinted moisturizer like Aveeno Continuous Radiance Moisturizing Lotion ($11.99 at most drugstores). Once you’ve established a light bronze base, you can confidently try a true sunless tanner like Banana Boat Summer Color Self-Tanning Lotion ($7.49 at most drugstores).  At a salon: Since tanning can be particularly tricky for redheads, they are perfect candidates for airbrush tanning, which involves a pro spraying the client with a handheld device. “A professional airbrusher can give the personal touch that a machine can’t, to assure you are obtaining the most flattering tan for your coloring,” says Ferreira. So don’t be shy: strip down and hold your head high — and while you’re at it, you might as well ask them to draw on the perfect summer abs. What, you don’t think the stars get them doing crunches, do you?


BE DAZZLED discover a world of glass and light June 22â&#x20AC;&#x201C;October 14, 2012

Major support is provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Shown: Island Universe (detail), 2008. Courtesy of the artist and Andrea Rosen Gallery, New York; Donald Young Gallery, Chicago; and White Cube Photo: Todd-White Art Photography, London.

GETOUT This weekend-long gathering for street bladers will get the blood pumping with a series of group skates across the city’s most gorgeous hills and landmarks. And on Saturday night, you can celebrate your roller mastery with the fest’s 7 p.m. dinner party at Meadhall (4 Cambridge Center, Cambridge, 617.714.4372), where the 100-plus beers on tap will help you nurse bruises and road burns. To register and learn more, visit



If your ears have ever had the pleasure of encountering Craig Finn, front man of The Hold Steady, then you know this as well as we do: the dude rocks. Sure, Finn resembles the kind of spectacled, button-downshirt-clad specimen one might encounter at a dot-com startup convention. But since 2004, the Boston-born guitarist and his band mates have been crafting balls-to-the-wall rock riffs like “Sequestered in Memphis” and “Stuck Between Stations,” capable of filling a stadium with rambunctious energy. Now, after Finn’s first solo stint, the Hold Steady are back on the road in full — and tonight they’ll play an 8 p.m. show at Royale (279 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.338.7699). Grab tickets ($20) at

WEDNESDAY, JULY 18 The average comic-book convention is already a pretty theatrical experience. Filled with aspiring (and thus appropriately costumed) Vulcans, elves, and androids, they tend to look like casting calls for a SyFy mini-series. But now the unabashedly geekedout gatherings are getting an actual stage treatment with True Believers, a new production from Boston-based writer and musician Thom Dunn. It promises loud laughs, blossoming relationships, and the requisite dose of X-Men in-jokes as an ardent cast of comicculture lovers intermingle at the local festival. Catch it at the Factory Theatre (791 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.817.6600) through July 21. For show times and tickets ($15– $18), visit

THURSDAY, JULY 19 Between a frighteningly bulked-up Tom Hardy as bad guy Bane, Anne Hathaway fetchingly filling out the Catwoman suit, and an inevitable boatload of big-budget explosions, Batman is really going to have his hands full this summer. And it’s <16> 7.17.12

hard to imagine a better buildup for The Dark Knight Rises, the final installment of Christopher Nolan’s artful, box-office-busting trilogy, than a full-fledged Dark Knight Marathon. Starting at 6 p.m., AMC Loews Boston Common (175 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.423.5801) will screen all three of Nolan’s flicks in their gritty glory, culminating with the midnight premiere of Rises. Will Bane break the Bat? Bring your homemade cape and find out. Get tickets ($25 digital, $40 IMAX) at

raves at this spring’s Coachella festival, and they’ll soon burn down Boston with an 8 p.m. show at House of Blues (15 Lansdowne Street, Boston, 888.693.2583). Grab tickets ($30–$45) at

SATURDAY, JULY 21 We like to think that we’ve come a long way from unintentionally trimming our neighbors’ rose bushes via roller-blade wipeouts. And we can soon put our skills to the test with Skate Boston 2012.

Even if you managed to forget the sight of Ryan Gosling stomping a hitman’s head into summer squash in Drive, you might recall the soundtrack: a gorgeous sprawl of ’80s-style pop numbers that paired seamlessly with nighttime LA. Our ears have been ringing ever since, and that’s why we’re looking forward to catching College, the man behind Drive anthem “A Real Hero,” live at Brighton Music Hall (158 Brighton Avenue, Allston, 617.779.0140). The French synthesizer savant won’t be traveling alone. Nantes-based nudisco trio Anoraak will also perform, packing seductive electronic singles like “Nightdrive with You.” The show starts at 9 p.m. Grab tickets ($15) at

MONDAY, JULY 23 Ever since President Obama and Jimmy Fallon slow-jammed the news with the Roots, it’s been tough to get a truly satisfying funk fix. But thanks to JP’s Milky Way Lounge (284 Amory Street, Jamaica Plain, 617.524.3740), our ear canals may finally get what they deserve. July sees the debut of Milky Way Mondays, a new artist residency with the local soul-jazz and funk continued on p18

FRIDAY, JULY 20 Sweden has given the world much more than affordable futons and flaxen-haired supermodels. Consider its export Refused, a standout of the ’90s hardcore-punk scene. We still remember our first encounter with the apocalyptic metal guitars and blood-curdling screams of “New Noise,” an anthem that has hardly been matched since the band’s untimely breakup. But maybe they’ll soon top themselves, now that front man Dennis Lyxzén and co. have reunited. They ended their 14-year hiatus by garnering









GETOUT continued FROM p16

wizards of Akashic Record. Busting out slow-burning, loin-flaring brass and organ numbers like “Freetime” and “Miami Blues,” the band should deliver a serious jolt to the start of the workweek. The no-cover night kicks off each Monday with trivia at 8 p.m., and the music starts at 10 p.m.



Some were ready to write off Liars after the so-so reception to They Were Wrong, So We Drowned, a concept album the band wrote after secluding themselves in a rural cabin and immersing themselves in witch history and folklore. But then we were rewarded with their 2006 album, Drum’s Not Dead, a hypnotic freak-out of furious percussion, ghostly guitar melodies, and brooding vocal work from Aussie front man Angus Andrew. We’ve kept our ears trained on them ever since, so count us in for tonight’s 8 p.m. show at the Paradise Rock Club (967 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, 617.562.8800), where Liars will promote their latest, the electronically accented WIXIW. Grab tickets ($15) at

<18> 7.17.12

Our last barbecue ended rather unceremoniously when things took a fiery turn — one that engulfed our backyard fence and several shrubs. (Our neighbors’ back porch was also included in the festivities.) So this time, we’re leaving the open-flame cooking to a professional like chef Michael Leviton. The brain behind Lumière (1293 Washington Street, Newton, 617.244.9199) is putting his touch on seasonal classics with the bistro’s recently launched Supper Club series. This month’s undertaking: a Summer BBQ with mountains of meat and all the fixings. Priced at $45 per diner, the feast will be thrown in Lumière’s recently renovated dining room and washed down with an optional beverage

pairing ($15) of Bully Boy bourbon sours. To secure your spot, RSVP by phone at least 48 hours in advance.

THURSDAY, JULY 26 Reason #183 we could never be on Survivor: foraging for scraps of food on an island strikes us as labor properly reserved for the innermost circle of hell. But thanks to Jasper White, Spectacle Island is hosting a much more heavenly feast this summer. Each Thursday and Friday night through August 31, you and the Summer Shack chef can kick off the weekend early with a Sunset Clambake. Just hop aboard the 6:15 p.m. ferry from Long Wharf, and you’ll find a smorgasbord of steamers, clam chowder, buttery corn on the cob, chorizo, and other succulent surprises just across the water. Grab tickets ($55–$80) at

FRIDAY, JULY 27 If there exists a story more noble (and tragic) than Orpheus’s journey through hell to find his late wife, Eurydice, we’ve yet to hear it. But what if things had

GETOUT haven’t descended upon Boston. Rather, it’s time for the Charles River Food Truck Festival at Brighton’s Artesani Park. From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., a fleet of New England’s finest meals-on-wheels specialists will serve up their most sumptuous fare along the riverbank. To sample the best of the fest, simply stock up on Taste Tickets ($1 each) online or in person, and see where your stomach takes you. This feeding frenzy will have limited seating, so bring that quilt and set up your own base camp. For advance tickets, visit

The Dø


gone sour between the lovebirds? And what if Eurydice considered her trip to hell a vacation, and Orpheus had to be cajoled into rescuing his wife? Those are the questions explored by Orpheus in the Underworld, a farcical spin on the classic Greek myth. The Boston Opera Collaborative brings the show to the Strand

Theatre (543 Columbia Road, Dorchester, 617.635.1403) from July 26 through July 29. Admission is free. For show times, check out

SATURDAY, JULY 28 If you hear a distant rumbling of engines and the sound of slashing knives, don’t panic. The Hells Angels

Olivia Merilahti and Dan Levy met while composing music for a bloody French thriller (Empire of the Wolves), but they’ve since discovered their sunnier sides while working together as The Dø. The duo borrow colorful percussion styles from hip-hop and spin reverberant, rhythmic indie-pop numbers like “On My Shoulders” and “Slippery Slope.” Heavy on the guitar licks and ambient noise, the songs are sharpened by Merilahti’s cherubic vocal presence. Riding the

waves of their 2011 album, Both Ways Open Jaws, the Dø are stopping by T.T. the Bear’s Place (10 Brookline Street, Cambridge, 617.492.0082) for a 10 p.m. show. Grab tickets ($10) at

MONDAY, JULY 30 Some nights, we want to feel like we’re roadies on tour with a hair band — downing juicy burgers weighted with cheddar and bacon, slamming ice-cold Jäger shots, and banging our heads to teeth-shattering guitar solos à la Slayer and Metallica. And this summer, we can find all these things at Metal Mondays, a new weekly head-banger bash organized by the good folks at Charlie’s Kitchen (10 Eliot Street, Cambridge, 617.492.9646). Local guitar mutilators Mortuus Ortus, ChinStrap, and Descend Upon the Sane will shake the silverware with searing distortion and feedback as the kitchen slings its reliable, gut-busting comfort food, beer, and hard spirits. Get there by 9 p.m. to beat the lines. Cover is $5.

— Miles Howard

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Bohemian Rhapsody

Summer concert wear has never looked so effortlessly cool. Vintageinspired fringe jams with sexy espadrilles and denim cut-offs, creating a look that riffs on bohochic and rock ’n’ roll. So when you hit the festival circuit this summer, pack your favorite pair of shortshorts and grab the best seat on the grass — just leave your ratty old band T-shirts off the roster.

— Renata Certo-Ware

ON JESSICA Smitten tank, $124, and Free People denim shorts, $88, both at Crush Boutique; “Deana” macramé vest, $400 at Calypso St. Barth; Splendid wedges, $109, and Echo “Bikini” bag, $20, both at Moxie

ON KELSEY Addison romper, $184 at Crush Boutique; “Filipa” lace caftan, $495 at Calypso St. Barth; leather belt with pouch, $29.95, and necklace, $12.95, both at H&M; Delman espadrilles, $275 at Moxie <20> 7.17.12


Calypso St. Barth, 114 Newbury Street, Boston, 617.421.1887 Crush Boutique, 131 Charles Street, Boston, 617.720.0010 H&M, 100 Newbury Street, Boston, 617.859.3192 Moxie, 51 Charles Street, Boston, 617.557.9991

Stylist/Producer: Renata Certo-Ware Photographer: Danny Kim of Visceral Photography Hair: Maura Spencer of Beaucage (71 Newbury Street, Boston, 617.437.7171) Makeup: Dianna Quagenti Models: Jessica H. and Kelsey P. of Maggie Inc.

278 Newbury St . Boston | 617.262.2220 | Photo: Drinker Images

Find Your True Style

The Formula for the Essentials of Life

Music Matchmaker Your Personalized guide to the Hubâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Hottest Acts By Miles Howard <22> 7.17.12

Say what you will about our humble Hub, but Boston is pretty consistently on the cutting edge of music. Still, unless you’re a fixture on the live scene, it can be hard to discover interesting new artists. Boston is no stranger to the stranglehold of corporate radio stations, and it’s tough to find great new tunes when you’re constantly subjected to overplayed Top 40. (Alas, we remain immune to Bieber Fever.) So we’ve brought you a roundup of some of the boldest, brightest local acts to emerge in recent years — and in case you’re nervous about diving headfirst into uncharted waters, we’ve correlated them to morefamiliar radio stars with similar sounds. Whether you’re a shoegazing softie for guitar feedback or an aspiring member of RZA’s entourage, there’s something for everyone. So read on, wait till your downstairs neighbors have departed for dinner, and crank that sound system to 11.

photo by danny kim of visceral photography

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hip-hop National Name: Common

Pitbull may be monopolizing the airwaves, but you prefer your hip-hop endowed with more interesting ideas than, say, having sex at the Holiday Inn. The first time you discovered Common’s soulful social reckoning “The 6th Sense” was nothing short of formative — just like “borrowing” your brother’s Wu-Tang CDs in 1997.

Local Faves: Mr. Lif and Akrobatik Intellectually creative, cliché-busting rap enjoys a devoted community of listeners in Boston, in no small part thanks to these lyrically gifted MCs. First, we’ve got Mr. Lif, a Brighton native and sonic disciple of old-school luminaries like KRS-One. A player in Boston’s hip-hop scene since the release of his 2000 EP, Enters the Colossus, Mr. Lif specializes in bruising, politically charged verses with slick, genre-hopping production accents. (For a taste, check out his epic El-P collaboration “Phantom.”) Then there’s his frequent collaborator Akrobatik. Chances are you’ve heard the Dorchester star rapping sports recaps on JAM’N 94.5, but Akrobatik’s résumé runs far deeper. His 2003 debut album, Balance, surged with teeth-chattering bass and searing testaments to hip-hop’s endangerment in the advance of musical corporatism. (We suspect he’d have scathing words for Chris Brown.) It’s been a few years since Mr. Lif and Akrobatik dropped albums, but both are active in local clubs (and Twitter!), so watch the web for show dates.

Ones to Watch: Moe Pope and Rain When Lif and Akrobatik do eventually hang up their mics, who else will keep Boston’s hip-hop community interesting? Our money is on Moe Pope and ace producer Rain. Their collaborative 2010 album, Life After God, was a powerhouse, marrying melancholic, self-reflexive rhymes with immaculate instrumental production on tracks like “Foolish” and “Bang Bang.” Still not convinced? Listen to their 2011 electronic detour, Depeche Moe, which slathers dark synth waves and industrial sirens across menacing numbers like “The Grateful Dead of Night.”

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Moe pope photo by david salafia; rain photo by joe difazio

Synth rock National Name: The Killers

When it comes to rock, you’re a sensualist. You like the big, beautiful synthesizers, reverberated drums, and infectious dance-floor hooks heard on singles like “Human.” But you also crave the familiar snarl of an overdriven guitar when tracks like “All These Things That I’ve Done” become a tad too whimsical.

Local Fave: Freezepop

If you thought the Killers’ Hot Fuss sounded like it came from a 1983 time capsule, just wait until you experience Freezepop. Fronted by entrancing vocalist Liz Enthusiasm and keytar master Sean T. Drinkwater, the four-piece delivers bright, bouncy sounds and retro ambience. The synth waves are sharp, sweeping, and colorful, and the spare guitar blasts provide a hair-raising crunch that pairs well with Enthusiasm’s understated, often ethereal choruses. Freezepop’s hottest numbers, like “Swimming Pool” and “Bike Thief,” are perfect for driving fast through Boston on a summer night, windows down and speakers pumping. And the band’s most recent release, “Doppelganger,” took their glittery game to a whole new level. An infectious number about an encounter with an ex’s strangely familiar new flame, the song explodes with soaring guitars and thick, erogenous synth leads that would fit right in a rerun of Miami Vice. Freezepop just wrapped an East Coast tour, but keep an eye out for these regulars on the Boston club scene.

One to Watch: GLpSS †33†H (Glass Teeth) Like white pants and pastel blazers, sunny synth rock will eventually outwear its welcome. Where do you turn next? Bite into Glass Teeth, a thrilling producer whose kinetic compositions sound like disco broadcasts from Hades. Taking notes from Crystal Castles and Goblin’s classic Dawn of the Dead soundtrack, Glass Teeth (real name Xavier Gath) makes every fuzzy synth note feel like the blow of a hatchet or the screech of a crone. Backed with fat beats, tracks like “Dead Dreamer” and “Flesh Palace” might induce nightmares, but chances are you’ll be dancing too hard to care.

roots reggae National Name: Damian Marley

Your last vacation to Kingston, Jamaica, ended two winters ago, but your ears remain parked on the beach. You like your guitar chords in quick, soulful slaps, and your drum beats diverse and imaginative on summery songs like Damian Marley’s “Me Name Jr. Gong.”

Local Fave: Mighty Mystic In 1989, Mighty Mystic immigrated to the United States from the Jamaican countryside, settling in Boston with his family. He’d already heard the calling of classic roots jams like “Buffalo Soldier” as a child, but upon discovering the Hub’s burgeoning ’90s hip-hop community, Mystic predicted a market for localized reggae. After years honing his craft, he shot to the top of critics’ lists and national reggae charts with his 2006 single “Riding on the Clouds.” It epitomizes Mystic’s signature sound, a spirited blend of heavy beats, layer upon layer of bright guitar bursts, and an intense, lung-busting vocal style that would fit in seamlessly on a RZA record. Mystic’s emulsion of old-school reggae and hip-hop techniques is even stronger on recent cuts like “Original Love.” One can only hope he’ll try cross-genre collaboration down the road, much like Damian Marley’s triumphant 2008 recording sessions with Nas. But in the meantime, you can catch him at the Newport Waterfront Reggae Festival on August 11.

One to Watch: Endangered Speeches Many gravitate toward classic reggae for its pleasant familiarity, but as with any genre, occasional tremors are needed to keep things fresh. Mariletta Konstantara, the Greek front woman of 13-piece hip-hop and reggae collective Endangered Speeches, is a source of such sonic shockwaves. She got her first taste of fame in her homeland, appearing in a pop music video as a bikini-clad teenager, but soon set off for the States and very different musical territory: the budding songstress put herself through Berklee and emerged ready to bust rhymes and rock dreads. Backed by a smoking collective of brass and guitars, Konstantara now engineers the Big Boi–meets–Bob Marley sound of Endangered Speeches. Check out their searing immigration lament “Dem Borders Will Fall.” continued on p26 The Killers photo by Torey Mundkowsky; freezepop photo by rick webb; Glass teeth photo by adrienne berlin

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alt rock National Name: Radiohead

Whether it’s the crunchy chords of “The Bends” or the ice house beats of “Idioteque,” you like your rock music to take risks, dammit! You remember that fateful day when Thom Yorke’s falsetto bleats and Jonny Greenwood’s twisted guitar aberrations first bruised your eardrums, and you’ve been insatiable ever since.

Local Fave: Mean Creek Taking their name from a 2004 teen revenge flick, Mean Creek evokes the formative years of Radiohead, when songs like “Street Spirit (Fade Out)” spoke of deep traumas with a few heartbreakingly naked guitar notes. Mean Creek sprang from a friendship between singers and guitarists Chris Keene and Aurore Ounjian, who once performed folk songs together. Recruiting bassist Erik Wormwood and drummer Mikey Holland, they adopted a gut-punching sound, marrying backwoods vocal harmonies with alternately clean and dirty guitar notes on tracks like “Light into Dark” and “Strange Man.” By 2010, the foursome had rocked SXSW and swept up many awards, including the Boston Phoenix’s 2010 Boston’s Best Act honor. But rather than rest on their laurels, Mean Creek released their finest works: the 2011 EPs Hemophiliac and The Land of Hopes & Dreams. Both display achingly powerful guitar compositions and confident vocal showmanship from Keene, who opens his lungs to the heavens. This fall, they’ll drop their third studio album, Youth Companion.

One to Watch: Neptune While we love ourselves a good tearjerking, heart-on-the-sleeves guitar single, sometimes we need more challenging rock. That leads us to Neptune. Fronted by artist Jason Sanford — who created the band’s instruments from scrap metal back in 1994 — Neptune has been a noisy, lo-fi poltergeist that’s shaken up Boston’s altrock community since the release of their acclaimed 2007 album, Gong Lake. Their sound errs on the darker, metallic side, but cuts like “Cash Mattress” prove just as hypnotically compelling as anything from Mean Creek’s catalog.

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radiohead photo by sebastian edge; mean creek photo by p. nick curran; Neptune photo by Suzanne Hunt

electro pop National Name: Ellie Goulding

Admit it: you’re a sucker for a silky voice amid big beats and shimmering breakdowns. Belting out “Lights” or “Starry Eyed” in the shower last Sunday may have earned you an eviction warning, but hey, you couldn’t help it. It’s your nature.

Local Fave: Young London Bostonians have gotten used to settling for other cities’ exported club bangers. But the tide turned last summer, when Young London exploded with “Let Me Go,” a Grade-A rump shaker of a single and a calling card for one of the hottest pop acts the Hub has produced in years. It began in 2010, when musicians Matt Rhoades and Sarah Graziani were introduced by friends. They clicked and began composing their own material, envisioning a sonic nebula somewhere between La Roux and Lady Gaga. From the sound of Young London’s self-titled debut album, which dropped in January, they’ve reached that destination. Rhoades and Graziani trade vocal duties, filling frenetic dance-floor dynamite like “Celebrity” and “Dangerous” with alternately seductive and celebratory singing. And Rhoades’s synthesizer virtuosity fills every track to the brim with beeping blasts of digital overdrive, building like a tsunami before a sweeping climax. The duo are currently wrapping the 2012 Warped Tour, which stops by Mansfield’s Comcast Center on July 19.

One to Watch: Casey Desmond

You may have caught Casey Desmond singing “Born This Way” on The Voice last year, but the Boston singer and self-professed synth geek is the product of many influences. Not only do her supercharged tracks like “Talking to God” and new single “Déjà Vu” invite stylistic comparisons to Young London, but also to more experimental electro-pop greats like Marina & the Diamonds. She also knows how to dress, with a wild wardrobe whose neon colors and concepts evoke David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust era and Daft Punk’s acid-fueled anime musical Interstella 5555.

post-rock National Name: Sigur Rós

Why strum a guitar when you could play it with a horsehair cello bow? You gravitate to Jónsi Birgisson’s glacial guitar echoes and empyrean vocals. And you’ve got a soft spot for the pulverizing maelstrom of feedback and distortion that finishes the band’s “Glósóli.”

Local Fave: Caspian One listen to Caspian’s “Moksha,” and you can tell that this mainstay of Boston’s post-rock sphere treads the same sonic tundra that Sigur Rós did on releases like Takk… The key difference: Caspian lets the guitars do all the talking, and they’re not afraid to shred their way to the finish. Guitarist Philip Jamieson and several friends began crafting celestial sounds in 2003; within months they’d slapped together a rough demo that earned them opening gigs for Japanese instrumental-rock band Mono. Since then, the six-man outfit has wowed ear canals with soaring squalls of emotive strings and drums, which play like fitting scores for a passionate bout of lovemaking or the birth of a new galaxy. Their 2009 sophomore album, Tertia, felt like an hour-long overdriven climax, strewn with spine-chilling Fender epics like “Ghosts of the Garden City” and “The Raven.” And Caspian has reportedly finished mixing its third album in Seattle, so expect a late-summer release and some bruising live shows here in Boston.

One to Watch: Ghost Box Orchestra Post-rock is kind of like the Taoist concept of yin-yang: to appreciate the sweeping compositions of an act like Caspian, you need to balance things out with edgier, more experimental players like Ghost Box Orchestra, a Boston quintet that takes its name from a recording device used by paranormal specialists. Like patchy transmissions from the dead, Ghost Box’s dissonant guitar patterns yield haunting results. And like Caspian’s cuts, Ghost Box tracks like “The Lodge” and “The Only Light On” could fill a cathedral, but their spooky sheen makes for an inimitable sound.

Casey Desmond photo by Emily Jones; Ghost Box Orchestra photo by Tom Gilmore

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Join Coors Light and



WZLX’s Chuck Nolin will be Broadcasting LIVE from 2 – 7PM Each Day Gearing up for BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN’s Two Concerts At the Home of Boston Baseball! Cask n’ Flagon 62 Brookline Ave • 617.536.4840 Jerry Remy’s 1265 Boylston Street, Boston • 617.236.7369 www.CASknFlAgon.Com • www.JeRRyRemyS.Com

Set List By Ariel Shearer

Craving a live-music fix? We chose one must-see show per week for the rest of the year. From pop icons to indie acts, rock gods to dubstep DJs, these headliners are sure to provide a killer soundtrack for the second stretch of 2012. Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re welcome.

ukimbra: wednesday, october 24, at royale photo by thom kerr

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uWeek of 7/16–7/22 EMALKAY Wednesday, July 18, at the Middle East Downstairs (480 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, 617.864.3278) With Skrillex now winning Grammys, it’s easy to overlook the grimy origins of dubstep. Before pop stars like Usher were pilfering the clubby sound, underground British producers were crafting this wobbly mutant genre of electronic dance music. The Birmingham-based Emalkay has long been among them, and he finally dropped his debut album, Eclipse, in 2011. It was about time: with EDM now at the forefront of American pop culture, dubstep has infiltrated the mainstream. Check out this pre-bandwagon producer as he spins at one of the summer’s dubbiest dance parties.

uWeek of 7/23–7/29 TWIN SHADOW Friday, July 27, at the Paradise Rock Club (967 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, 617.562.8800) Twin Shadow, aka George Lewis Jr., rides new wave through gritty realms of rock and dark synth, and guitar-strong songwriting keeps him a safe distance from the doldrums of contemporary pop. His just-dropped second album, Confess, is the perfect soundtrack to neon nights; the new single “Five Seconds” embodies the spirit of an ’80s school dance. Twin Shadow brings a punky disco party to the Paradise this month, and while leg warmers are optional, dancing is mandatory.

udragonette: friday, september 14, at the paradise rock club

uWeek of 7/30–8/5 LITTLE SPOON Sunday, August 5, at the Middle East Upstairs (472 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, 617.864.3278) If you enjoy lucid dreaming, you’ll love Little Spoon. The slow, hypnotic beats of the Allston artist (real name: Cameron Potter) have been described as “blankeywave” and “pillowpop.” We’d describe them as feeling like a sonic brain massage: listening to Little Spoon’s emotionally laden but lulling guitars,

drums, found sounds, and FX in a dark room definitely makes for vivid mind wandering.

uWeek of 8/6–8/12 REAL ESTATE Friday, August 10, at the Paradise Rock Club (967 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, 617.562.8800) New Jersey gets big points for Real Estate. These mellow East Coast surf rockers play dreamy guitar melodies and hum-sing through sensitive lyrics, a winning combination that creates instant summertime theme songs. Real Estate’s 2011 album, Days, became an indie-critic favorite, and soon after its release the band embarked on an international tour, followed by a gig at this year’s Coachella. Now they’re bringing their sunny sound to the Paradise.

uWeek of 8/13– 8/19

ula coka nostra: Saturday, August 25, at the middle east downstairs <30> 7.17.12

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN and the E Street Band Tuesday, August 14, and Wednesday, August 15, at Fenway Park (4 Yawkey Way, Boston, 877.733.7699) The Boss turned Fenway Park into a music venue back in 2003, when he and his merry band staged the first rock concert ever played at our beloved ballpark. And this March,

Springsteen dropped his 17th studio album, Wrecking Ball, a record built on heavy riffs and pointed cultural commentary. Its international tour will bring the enduring icon back to the stadium for a little “dancing in the dark” once night falls.

uWeek of 8/20–8/26 LA COKA NOSTRA Saturday, August 25, at the Middle East Downstairs (480 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, 617.864.3278) The elusive hip-hop supergroup known as La Coka Nostra is composed of hardcore-rap heavies DJ Lethal, Danny Boy, Ill Bill, and Boston’s own Slaine. Their 2009 debut album featured high-profile guests like Snoop Dogg and Immortal Technique. And their second full-length, July’s Masters of the Dark Arts, is bound to be another ferocious collaboration. (We’d expect nothing less from a collective that includes alums of House of Pain.)

uWeek of 8/27–9/2 BEIRUT Tuesday, August 28, at House of Blues (15 Lansdowne Street, Boston, 888.693.2583) An indie-folk outfit heavily influenced by world music, Beirut offers pure aural escapism. Their 2006 debut top photo by kristin Vicari

inspired a cult-like following, but front man Zach Condon retreated to an isolated cabin for six wintry months to write songs for 2011’s The Rip Tide (while, ironically enough, nursing a perforated eardrum). The band has been touring internationally in support of this celebrated third full-length, and they’ll play House of Blues before heading to LA for this year’s FYF Fest.

uWeek of 9/3–9/9 MADONNA Tuesday, September 4, at TD Garden (100 Legends Way, Boston, 617.624.1050) It’s been nearly 30 years since her debut album, but Madonna is still flashing her nipple (on her current tour), shooting her mouth off (in Lady Gaga’s direction), and using her electric sexuality and massive stage presence to empower and inspire fans worldwide. The pop

legend’s 12th studio album, MDNA, comes with an international tour, which is bringing Madonna’s ecstatic (get it?) live spectacle to the Garden. The set list includes classics like “Vogue” alongside the new single “Turn Up the Radio.”

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uWeek of 9/10–9/16 DRAGONETTE Friday, September 14, at the Paradise Rock Club (967 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, 617.562.8800) Dragonette’s high-energy electropop is the musical equivalent of snorting Pixy Stix. The Canadian trio’s latest single, “Let It Go,” is a party monster so strong, we could use it as a post-funeral pick-me-up. (Sniffle. The dearly departed would have wanted it that way.) The group’s catchy creations have been adopted by DJs and Cyndi Lauper alike, so continued on p32

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uFirst aid kit: Friday, September 28, at royale expect Dragonette to breathe fire on the ’Dise dance floor.

uWeek of 9/17–9/23 DAVID BYRNE & ST. VINCENT Sunday, September 23, at the Orpheum Theatre (1 Hamilton Place, Boston, 617.482.0106) Former Talking Heads frontman David Byrne has collaborated with the versatile singer-songwriter (and Berklee dropout) St. Vincent on a new album called Love This Giant, set for release in early September. Wondering what happens when a new-wave legend and a baroquepop ingénue make music together? Fear not. The record’s opening track, “Who,” offers whimsical reassurance: Byrne’s voice is as strong as ever, and St. Vincent cuts his howls with melodic breathiness. Insert sigh of relief here.

uWeek of 9/24–9/30 FIRST AID KIT Friday, September 28, at Royale (279 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.338.7699) Brace yourself: here’s a YouTube sensation that won’t offend your ear canals. Swedish sisters Johanna and Klara Söderberg first wowed the Web in 2008 with a Fleet Foxes <32> 7.17.12

video cover; the duo have since mastered the art of heart-melting with their own spine-tingling folk ballads, which soften tear-jerking vocal harmonies with gentle acoustic rhythms. In late January, First Aid Kit released their second album, The Lion’s Roar, pairing painfully honest folk poetry with upbeat tunes in tracks like “Blue” and “Emmylou.”

uWeek of 10/1–10/7 MORRISSEY Friday, October 5, at the Wang Theatre (265 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.482.9393) One of the most influential musicians to ever emerge from England’s rock scene is visiting Boston to inspire an evening of alt-pop pandemonium. The legendary singer-songwriter first broke ground with seminal ’80s act the Smiths, but he still performs with such gusto, he makes age 53 look more fun than adolescence. Witness living rock history when Morrissey takes over the Wang on the first stop of his 2012 US tour.

uWeek of 10/8–10/14 TOWER OF POWER Friday, October 12, at the Wilbur Theatre (246 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.248.9700)

In music, trends come and go (some mercifully faster than others). But whether it’s inspiring old-school disco, influencing modern hip-hop, or just found in its unadulterated form, funk music is always hip. That’s why Tower of Power has been gigging for more than 40 years, inspiring pelvic gyrations across generations. The heart of the band lies in its horn section, known for massive brass sounds guided by TOP’s founding sax men. Let the funky doctors give you a shot of soul.

uWeek of 10/15–10/21 MARK ERELLI Saturday, October 20, at Club Passim (47 Palmer Street, Cambridge, 617.492.7679) Massachusetts native Mark Erelli earned a graduate degree in evolutionary biology, but now he pens whip-smart lyrics instead of academic papers. And by pairing his socially conscious poetry with twangy acoustic ballads, he’s reinventing country music with surprising sophistication. His folk musings have garnered plenty of accolades: for instance, in 2009, Erelli was invited to contribute to the Darwin Song Project, which created a compilation inspired by the father of evolutionary thought. (Ahem. Ted Nugent he is not.)

uWeek of 10/22–10/28 KIMBRA Wednesday, October 24, at Royale (279 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.338.7699) Working with Gotye on “Somebody That I Used to Know” brought her name to the mainstream, but this 22-year-old songstress is poised for independent success. Kimbra’s debut album, Vows, dropped in the US in May, revealing soulful idiosyncrasies and boundless vocal ambition. Her confident delivery makes the jump from candy-coated pop tracks like “Cameo Lover” to jazz scatting in “Good Intent” seem effortless. Catch this pop pixie when she rules over Royale.

uWeek of 10/29–11/4 CITIZEN COPE Friday, November 2, at House of Blues (15 Lansdowne Street, Boston, 888.693.2583) Citizen Cope (born Clarence Greenwood) has roamed across the sonic landscape. Though he released his debut album as a singer-songwriter and guitarist, he once cooked beats for the althip-hop band Basehead. We love a multi-talented man, but we’ve gotten used to Cope’s bluesy photo by neil krug

howls, which capture the essence of old-time Americana in lyrical folklore designed for 21st-century romantics. Cope dropped his new album, One Lovely Day, on July 17. Tonight should be even lovelier.

uWeek of 11/5–11/11 CHRIS ISAAK Sunday, November 11, at the Orpheum Theatre (1 Hamilton Place, Boston, 617.482.0106) Modern rockabilly is a sonic subculture — a world of ironic bouffant hairdos and skit-skattering drums fit for a concert in a beachside trailer park. But Isaak’s dreamy vocals and sex appeal have long taken elements of the genre mainstream. The musician and occasional actor has been writing and recording rockabilly and surfrock originals since the mid-’80s, but for his 2011 release, Beyond the Sun, he covered tracks by legends like Johnny Cash and Elvis Presley. Swoon.

uWeek of 11/12–11/18 ANI DIFRANCO Tuesday, November 13, at the Wilbur Theatre (246 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.248.9700) Ani DiFranco started her DIY journey with angst-ridden albums and lyrics filled with disdain for major record companies. (So it’s no surprise that the righteous babe has run her own record company

since ’89. Take that, label whores.) Though DiFranco remains a feminist and folk-music icon, her songs have seemingly softened over time. Released in January, her 17th studio album, ¿Which Side Are You On?, sounds like gentle poetry in comparison to her gritty songs of the ’90s. We’re intrigued to hear her reined-in righteousness live.

uWeek of 11/19–11/25 THE CHICKEN SLACKS Thursday, November 22, at the Cantab Lounge (738 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, 617.354.2685) With seven epic years of residency at the Cantab Lounge, the Chicken Slacks are one of our city’s best-known house bands. Every Thursday night at around 9 p.m., the Slacks use Southern soul and classic funk to fill the dance floor. If you still haven’t sought them out, there’s no excuse — and this year the band welcomed a new lead vocalist and drummer, giving even ardent fans a reason to watch the Slacks rejuvenate their groove.

uWeek of 11/26–12/2

Juliana Hatfield Covers album

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CHUCHO VALDÉS QUARTET Thursday, November 29, at the Berklee Performance Center (136 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, 617.747.2261) The jazz piano compositions of Chucho Valdés have earned this continued on p34

utower of power: Friday, October 12, at the wilbur theatre photo by alex solca

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usimian mobile disco: tuesday, December 10, at the paradise rock club Cuban artist multiple Grammys and international praise. He’s worked with Omara Portuondo of the Buena Vista Social Club, along with legends like Herbie Hancock and Dizzy Gillespie. Tonight Valdés will bring his virtuoso piano stylings to Berklee as part of the Celebrity Series of Boston.

uWeek of 12/3–12/9

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CONOR OBERST Thursday, December 6, at Converse Hall at Tremont Temple (88 Tremont Street, Boston, 617.523.7320) You’ve probably experienced Oberst’s influence — even if you don’t recognize his name. The versatile singer-songwriter is best known as the voice behind Bright Eyes, but with other projects Oberst has churned out contemporary folk, indie toe-tappers, and even fuzzy rock made with Desaparecidos. He’s something of a wild card, and that Renaissance Man résumé has ensured a pretty broad influence on the indie-music scene. Tonight he takes his solo tour to Tremont.

uWeek of 12/10–12/16


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SIMIAN MOBILE DISCO Tuesday, December 10, at the Paradise Rock Club (967 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, 617.562.8800) When their rock band Simian split up, London-based musicians James Ford and Jas Shaw put down their drums and keyboard — and picked up DJing. As Simian Mobile Disco, they moved into electronic territory, remixing other artists and dropping throbbing house and shimmering nu-disco of their own production. The analog artists released their

latest album, Unpatterns, in May — and we have every reason to believe they’ll drive us bananas on the Paradise dance floor.

uWeek of 12/17–12/23 THE STARTENDERS Friday, December 21, at the Plough & Stars (912 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, 617.576.0032) The Solstice Circus is a semiannual ritual celebrating the longest and shortest days of the year, and the Plough & Stars is the Cambridge bar where this wacky tradition was invented. Comedians and circus artists join musicians under one roof for an evening of eccentric entertainment. The Startenders are the house band of the Solstice Circus, and this impromptu supergroup of dedicated local musicians knows how to throw down all (extra-lengthy) night long.

uWeek of 12/24–12/30 THE MIGHTY MIGHTY BOSSTONES TBA Every year just after Christmas, the Mighty Mighty Bosstones host their annual Hometown Throwdown gig series to reward their devoted local following. This year brings the Bosstones’ 15th annual ska-core holiday celebration, and with the band currently on tour in Australia, it could be a while before the Hometown Throwdown dates and venues are announced. (Check for updates.) But plan to snatch a ticket, because one thing is certain: watching front man Dicky Barrett play “Santa” for ska kids is a Boston tradition not to be missed.


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Tortilla Española at Tres Gatos Thumbing their noses at the ongoing recession, worthy new restaurants continue to open at a brisk pace in Greater Boston, leaving restaurant critics with a high-class problem: not being able to get to all of them promptly. For instance, Tres Gatos (470 Centre Street, Jamaica Plain, 617.477.4851) opened more than a year ago and has been widely reviewed, but Food Coma just got here, and we’re ruing the fact. This charming Spanish restaurant, set in a former private residence (and selling a small selection of books and vinyl in its back rooms), manages a rare feat: taking a very traditional approach to some dishes, getting creative with others, and executing both styles with grace and aplomb. For instance, I’ve never seen roasted, sea-salted, spiced pepitas ($5) in a Madrid bar (pumpkin seeds are more common in Latin America), but they’re a terrific snack, a classy update on beer nuts, encouraging even faster downing of the crisp, easy-drinking, wallet-friendly Ivison fino sherry ($6). Maybe they serve soft-shell crab ($11) fried in semolina batter somewhere in Barcelona, but probably not with slivers of scallions and a Thai-inflected chili-ginger sauce. Regardless, I’d bet no one would object to pairing it with a tumbler of Basque white, like the lemony, effervescent, perfectly summery 2010 Ameztoi Txakolina ($10). Does some rustic Castilian PHOTO BY joel veak

taberna offer slices of grilled lamb’s tongue ($11)? Perhaps, but I’ll wager they’re not plated next to creamy grits topped with a medium-boiled egg. Other tapas here lean more canonical, like one of the most exquisitely tender, buttery plates of jamón Ibérico ($12) I’ve tasted this side of the Atlantic. No liberties are taken or needed with a wedge of Valdeón ($5), a mildly intense blue cheese served with a dab of honey and good rustic bread. And there’s nothing more utterly at home in a tapas bar — nor so often over-cheffed in American-Spanish restaurants — than tortilla Española ($6), the frittata-like wedge of thin-sliced Yukon Gold potatoes, here properly bound with nothing more than eggs, olive oil, and sea salt, liberally dosed with more fine, grassy olive oil. Yes, there’s also a pretty, effusive plume of aioli, tinted coral with smoky pimentón, but this tortilla hardly needs it, so fine is its elemental, unadorned flavor. That understated esthetic extends throughout this place, from the softly lit interior’s chocolate and tangerine walls, to the cozy patio out front, to service that is at once leisurely and solicitous, well-suited to the distinctly motley, laid-back JP crowd. Even in a small city like Boston, it’s hard to keep up with every newcomer — but if ever a place inspired a “Better late than never,” it’s Tres Gatos.

— MC Slim JB

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75 Arlington Street, Boston, MA 02116 617.357.4810 • <38> 7.17.12


Charles Draghi of Erbaluce

Crossing the street from Park Square’s bustle into Erbaluce (69 Church Street, Boston, 617.426.6969) is a little like walking through the train station on your way to Hogwarts. Hidden in plain view, the tiny, quite perfect restaurant is a little bit Left Bank, a little bit Italian villa, and a lot of chef-owner Charles Draghi. A classically trained professional’s professional, he’s at his stove every night; he is the savory chef and the pastry chef. (Note his recent star turn on the Food Network’s Sweet Genius.) Fittingly for someone who works a stone’s throw from the Theater District, Draghi also writes plays, speaks with Shakespearean eloquence, and befriends artists and actors. And boy, does he love his music. Are you a musician? I play the harmonica. We grew up listening to Mario Lanza in a classic Italian household. . . . There was a lot of cha-cha-cha and big-band music in our house. But I am a big jazz fan — Lee Morgan, the trumpet player with the Jazz Messengers, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis. When I was a kid, a neighbor had me listen to Coltrane with my eyes closed. I could see things — shapes, colors. It forever changed the way I thought about music. How does music impact your cooking? I think of my cooking as bluenote cooking. When I cook, I think about Coltrane. The music is running into my food. What would Lee Morgan do with this? How would John Coltrane cook this fish? You know what blue note is, right? Bebop? No? Well, it’s amazingly technical music that came out of the big-band era. The greats of jazz — Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker — hated the word jazz; they thought it was a denigrating term that sounded like promiscuous sex and came out of a whorehouse. They were adamant about calling their music American classical music. Parker would break up each chord into five or seven notes, and then break up the time signature faster and faster into smaller notes — quarter notes, eighth notes, 16th notes, 32nd notes — a flurry of intense staccato notes. Too challenging for the casual listeners, but musicians loved it. Along came blue-note jazz. Simple, old-school, the blues played with a swing eighth note tucked in. A little bit of a minor key, dangling, visceral, primitive, and played with amazing technical brilliance. So, what’s blue-note cooking? My cooking is about starting with artistry and classical training — French, North African, Italian — the technical ability to do anything complex with food, and knowing how to pare it back, how to shed technique, how to take food to its purest primal essence. How does that theory translate on the menu? My food is simple: fish and greens, meat and potatoes, beans. But the people who eat at Erbaluce find it complex. Take, for example, a fish like a flounder. Classical French technique is to take the fillet off the bone, spiral it into a rosette, and top it with a perfect beurre blanc sauce. That’s what I was trained to do. But as a blue-note chef, I know that if I take the fish off the bone, I’ll be leaving the core essence of the fish behind, the flavor of the sea. So I cook it whole. When I cook, I think, “Let’s play the blues; let’s play old-school country.” The reaction from our guests is amazing. Is cooking an art or a craft? I’m in the middle generation of chefs. I was trained by chefs who considered each dish a work of art, each sauce their identifiable signature. The next generation after me is all about the craft of cooking — back to the farmhouse, the old-school charcuterie, nose to tail. You can’t tell which chef made the food, but it tastes really good. I’m somewhere in the middle, in between art and craft.

— Louisa Kasdon

Louisa Kasdon can be reached at



Chef Brian Poe is used to refining wild beasts. When he arrived at The Rattlesnake in 2009, he gave the previously unexceptional Boylston Street bar an actual culinary program — dubbed Poe’s Kitchen at The Rattlesnake — and managed to tame the taste buds of its regular party animals. Once upon a time, buffalo wings and bowls of Tostitos would have been enough

to sate them; Poe got them eating wild-boar burritos and duck quesadillas. But in his latest venture, his first as coowner, the chef really ups the ante on his game. We mean that literally: at Poe’s Tip Tap Room (138 Cambridge Street, Boston, 857.263.7614), which opened in June, the menu features enough animals to fill an ark. The tasty cuts of protein

(the titular “tips”) come from mainstays like cow, turkey, swordfish, and lamb ($10.95), which was our favorite. Getting a hint of mint from a glace and marinade, the tender tips are topped with tasty tzatziki and balanced by the subtle heft of accompanying chèvre mashed potatoes. But Poe also rotates in a daily Wild Game Tip Special, generally priced at $20, to offer selections that are a bit more unusual — at least for those of us without a firearms permit and a closet full of camouflage. Think yak, elk, and antelope, the last of which we especially enjoyed; the flavorful meat — tender like lean beef and slightly sweet — was marinated in parsley and peppercorn. Poe also serves some hefty appetizers, including potato ($10.95) topped with seven bacon tips (boar, pancetta, prosciutto, and more), a cheese sauce made with PBR beer, and fried oysters. And for a refreshing summer starter, try the lobster ($12.95), dripping with mouth-watering basil butter and served with sides of corn on the cob and coleslaw. Sure, his Rattlesnake menu added bells and whistles, giving the spot’s pub food extra bite. But it’s at the Tip Tap Room that Poe looks set to make serious noise. The curious may come for the wide menagerie of meats, but they’ll come back for a chef who has harnessed his talents and created a refined menu that leaves us hungry like the wolf. Or maybe even the yak.

— Scott Kearnan PHOTO BY joel veak

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Bruno Prado at Storyville

Raising the Bar

We spent a lot of time in Boston’s nightlife venues “researching” for the Music issue this month — and while the music was predictably top-notch, the drinks were typically sub-par. It got us thinking: plenty of our bars boast impressive beverage programs. Are there any clubbier spots in Boston where you can actually find well-made drinks? “The few lounges, restaurants, and bars in Boston that get a great nightlife crowd and offer decent cocktails are not considered ‘nightclubs’ per se,” says Teodora Bakardzhieva, bar manager at the Emerald Lounge (200 Stuart Street, Boston, 800.395.7046), which isn’t what you’d traditionally think of as a club; it’s a lounge with a nightlife vibe. Emerald is one of a relatively small handful of places — like Julep, Naga, Middlesex Lounge, Descent, and Storyville — where you can still see a DJ spin or a band perform in a crowded throng, but have a much better drinking experience than that at a typical club venue. It’s not necessarily that the service and drinks at most clubs are horrible, says Bakardzhieva; it’s just a matter of tailoring your order to your environment. “In most nightclubs in Boston, the rule of thumb is to stick with ordering basic cocktails if you want to ensure you get one,” she says. “If you enjoy a vodka and soda, you’re in luck.” After all, when people are screaming rapid-fire orders over a loud DJ, itching to get back to the dance floor, it’s probably not the best time to give a bartender a complicated order. “It’s not that they [average nightclub drinks] are bad,” says bartender Mike Cresta of Julep Bar (200 High Street, Boston, 617.261.4200). “It’s that they’re simple. It’s all the same thing: vodka sodas, vodka Red Bulls, Jack and Cokes — stuff that is simple and quick to make.” The less fist-pumpy spots still find their bars swarmed when the nightlife crowds descend. So they take steps to streamline things without compromising craft. Emerald created its cocktail recipes with the inevitable time crunch in mind. “All of our cocktails are designed to take less than a minute to make, which I consider a short time for getting a delicious cocktail,” says Bakardzhieva. And proving that you don’t need to sacrifice quality for expediency, the bartenders at Emerald are required to jigger every drink. Yes, even the vodka sodas. Back Bay’s Storyville (90 Exeter Street, Boston, 617.236.1134) varies <40> 7.17.12

the cocktail menu slightly between its two bars. In the lounge area, you can get something time-consuming — like a multi-spirit, layered Tiki cocktail. On the clubbier side of the venue, you can get simpler (but still sophisticated) options — say, a crafty shot like Firewater, a whiskey infused with cinnamon and honey. Addition by subtraction also improves things. Sure, you can still get a Bud, but Storyville doesn’t cram its beer list with predictable macro-swill. That ensures guests will try more interesting options, like Racer 5 IPA or Ellie’s Brown Ale. There’s no reason other clubs can’t follow suit by improving selection and maybe even designating one bar for craftier drinking. When it comes to cocktail quality at nightclubs, it’s also worth considering who is making your drink. And look, we don’t mean to be shallow, but — well, okay, let’s be shallow. Bartenders hired for their eye-popping implants or bulging, tribal-tattoo-covered biceps generally don’t make the best Sazeracs and Negonis. That’s our theory. Bartender Bruno Prado of Storyville is more diplomatic. “I think there is a different standard for nightclubs and club bartenders,” says Prado. “But who can blame them [the nightclubs], as most of the drink orders are for vodka Red Bulls.” Sometimes there’s simply a difference in how seriously — or should we say exclusively — bartenders treat their craft. “I find that many club bartenders work as a second source of income, rather than pursuing bartending as their profession,” says the Brazilian-born Prado, who did time at fancier spots like Sel de la Terre. Bakardzhieva is a pro too. She was the first woman to run the bar at Boston’s famously high-falutin’ Locke-Ober (which once prohibited women from its dining room). Hiring people who give a shit is a good idea in any field. And one other thing: even if the drinks have to come fast and furious, and even if the staff isn’t the most experienced, there’s one area where even your average nightclub can succeed if it tries: hospitality. “I believe good service can be provided anywhere, regardless of the type of place or the atmosphere,” says Bakardzhieva. A solid experience can often make up for a lack of technique. A drink in your hand is good. A drink and a smile on your face is better.

— Luke O’Neil

Got an idea for Liquid? Email photo by joel veak



reside A.

D. C.

At Home with Joyce Linehan The PR Maven reveals her living room’s rock-star past You think your place has hosted interesting houseguests? Behold publicist Joyce Linehan’s living room. Today much of Linehan’s time is dedicated to running her PR company, Ashmont Media, which represents arts entities like the ICA and ArtsEmerson. But the Ashmont Hill resident has had a storied career in the music industry; she’s managed many bands and once worked in promotions and A&R for influential grunge label Sub Pop. (Know anyone else with a gold record of Nirvana’s Incesticide hanging in her bathroom? We thought not.) Linehan didn’t just work alongside rock stars. When they swung through town, her home became the center of their orbit: a spot to write music, kick back with other artists, and spend the night (or longer). Here, you might have reached for morning coffee with the Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan, shared couch space with Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder, or clinked bottles with Courtney Love. (The Hole singer wrote her anthemic “Doll Parts” at Linehan’s home.) “There was a place like this in every city,” says Linehan of her rock-star crash pad. As she prepares to sell her home — she’s currently renovating a Lower Mills house with its own recording studio and ballroom — we stopped by for a look around and a look back.

— Scott Kearnan


C. and D.

A. Even before Linehan bought it in ’92, the house was already a hospitable hangout to many. (Local lore has it that a small stage area in the basement once hosted neighborhood puppet shows.) It was a gathering spot for Dorchester’s vibrant Lithuanian community, of which its former homeowner was a member. “When I first moved in, many of the colors were those of the Lithuanian flag,” says Linehan. Though she repainted the rooms, we pointed out that her living area’s color scheme — with its yellow walls, red curtains, and green-flecked couch — still nods to the flag’s hues. “Totally unintentional!” she chuckles. B. The former homeowner has since been nicknamed the “Marble Lady” after the colorful marbles she embedded in the ceiling around various light fixtures. (Creative? Sure. Curious? Definitely.) Linehan’s living-room fixture is extra bright, thanks to a half dozen Christmas bulbs that encircle the main lights. They’ll illuminate any dark corner, and maybe that’s a good thing: though she’s not a believer in the supernatural herself, Linehan has heard plenty of tales of Marble Lady hauntings from overnight guests, including Calexico front man Joey Burns. C. To complement the overhead fixture, Linehan added dozens of marbles to the ornate teakwood coffee table directly below. (The red plastic monkeys? Those are Barrel of Monkeys game pieces, lovingly strewn by the guys of seminal synth-rock band Six Finger Satellite.) But the table itself also boasts plenty of personal — and political — history. It was given to Linehan by her great-uncle, a merchant marine who brought it back from Hong Kong in the early 1960s. And tucked within the elaborately carved inset scene is an actual piece of the Berlin Wall. The wall fell on Linehan’s birthday — November 9, 1989 — and she retrieved the rock while touring Germany with the rockers of Giant Sand shortly thereafter. D. Linehan’s visitors leave behind more than cool memories: they also sign her guest book, filled with autographs from friends, entertainers (like Saturday Night Live actor Fred Armisen, who once drummed in the punk band Trenchmouth), and even some politicians. Linehan is a diehard Democrat, and her living room recently hosted the first Listening Tour stop for Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren. We love that Linehan knows how to rock the house — and the vote.

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phoTos by melissa ostrow



Out of Tune I knew my friend was truly in love with her new girlfriend when she uttered the following statement: “I’m taking her to Country Fest.” Suddenly this arbiter of musical taste, one who had shaped my youth’s soundtrack from boy bands to hair bands, was losing her sound judgment over love. Country?! Their relationship must be placing a lot of emphasis on that first syllable, if she’s willing to endure hours of tasteless twang. There’s a lot I’m willing to tolerate in a relationship. (Okay, not really.) But caving to bad taste in music isn’t palatable to me. In fact, music has been a deal breaker in the past. Maybe this seems trivial to some of you. But before you discount music’s contribution to compatibility, think about the role it has played in your relationship. In the beginning, it probably set the tone for the seduction. Then heartbreaking ballads and empowering anthems got you through the gut-wrenching ups and downs. And it likely provides the soundtrack to your sex life! And no wonder: research has proven that music — even sans vocals — can elicit a similar dopamine response from the brain as a good orgasm. (Good music, that is. I’m assuming the same study would prove that Toby Keith songs could actually turn a moist vagina into a sandpapery cat’s tongue.) And by the way, I’m not the only one who feels this strongly about the dangers of discordant tastes in music. “I once labored over a mix CD for a girl for weeks,” recalled one pal. “When she sent me her mix CD in return, it was so bad I wanted to break up immediately!” “I had one girlfriend who loved three genres that were all cringeworthy — bad hip-hop, bad Top 40, and country,” admitted another friend. “It spoke to a larger cultural void that existed between us.” Sure, many good relationships involve compromise. To me, that means agreeing to drink clear liquor only after noon. But allow for compromise in the music department, and soon you could be giving blowjobs to a soundtrack of Nickelback. And what would compromise really sound like in a bedroom playlist? Is it Erykah Badu setting the sultry mood one minute

Brought to you by the Greater Boston Beverage Society, the Boston Bar Stars Hall of Fame highlights Boston’s own homegrown mixological talent! One of the GBBS’s main goals is to preserve and promote Boston’s cocktail and hospitality culture and history. What better way is there to do that than by getting up close and personal with the city’s finest? In October of 2012 the Greater Boston Beverage Society will hold the first-ever Boston Cocktail Summit, a three-day celebration of Greater Boston’s cocktail culture designed to highlight the city’s fascinating history of mixology, showcase New England’s breweries, wineries, and distilleries, and raise funds to help local charities. The Boston Cocktail Summit will celebrate the culture of the cocktail with three days of events, parties, educational seminars, and an opening gala with proceeds benefitting the newly established Greater Boston Beverage Society. For more information visit

and then Blake Shelton prattling on about his pickup the next? That’s enough to make even the sturdiest strap-on go soft. Maybe I’m so passionate about this because, historically, I’ve had music-savvy significant others. They’ve served as my Pitchfork, working like cute little curators to distill the vast musical ocean into tiny droplets that tickle my ears. Music, shared music, figured prominently in our relationships. And when they ended, my memories of those partners became inseparable from the sounds that accompanied them. She was Cocteau Twins. He was Morcheeba. She was Radiohead. The few boring blips in between came with Southern rock and cacophonous techno. But if you’re one of those willing to change your sonic standards for sex, there may be hope. Maybe what begins as a compromise could be an entry point to genuine interest. Remember that cowgirl I mentioned earlier? Turns out she lassoed her lady into not just listening to her music, but liking it. “When we finally talked about music preference, no sparks flew, but I saw it as a work in progress,” she remembers. “In my heart, I knew there was an illiterate, inbred, beer-drinking cowgirl itching to come out.” You know, someone should write a country song about that.

Meet Michael Stevens. Having toured with the likes of The Beastie Boys, De La Soul, and A Tribe Called Quest, the now front man of the power trio The Dawg and Poni Show has no hesitation when it comes to performing in front of a crowd or behind a bar. The Boston Music Award winner loves to blend “spirited” harmonies in cocktails at Silvertone Bar and Grill. His craft cocktails (more savory than sweet) coupled with his ability to make you feel right as rain can’t be beat. Don’t hesitate to ask how he can make you feel like a star! • Michael’s first bar job in Boston? Small Planet Bar and Grill • The spirit Michael can’t live without? Tequila! • Michael’s guilty pleasure cocktail? A White Russian “Tom Mastricola style”... Find out what that means for yourself! • What Michael is most looking forward to at the Boston Cocktail Summit? Hanging out with cool like-minded people! • Michael’s advice for surviving the Boston Cocktail Summit in one piece: Eat well and stay hydrated! • What Michael is drinking right now: A Happy Meal #2. For those of you who know, cheers! For those that don’t know, find out!

— Jeannie Greeley

Jeannie Greeley is a freelance writer in a harmonious relationship. She can be reached at


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for more photos, go to






Beefeater/Plymouth Gin Cruise with OntheBar

1. Arley Howard, Maria Bargas, and Lamont Bullock; 2. Sarah Baker and Tim Hagney; 3. Kitty Amann and Mike Legere; 4. Daniel Burbun and Marcelline Lopes; 5. Eugenie Gore and Chris Olds; 6. Paul Bruno, Jennifer Costa, and Joe Duggan; 7. Katie Semanski, Nicky Bandera, and Dana Searle; 8. Jack Frohlinger, Ashley McCarthey, and Rachel Bourke; 9. Sarah Baker, English Bill, and Jacqueline Eagan; 10. Ned Brooks, Laura Kelly, Dave Hynes, Ed Brooks, Jamie Sparks, Jessica Sparks, Molly Keedy, and Mark Walsh; 11. Anthony Roldan, Corey Bunnewith, TJ Connelly, and Ian Stanczyk.







photos by gina manning







jose mcintyreâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s block party

1. Gabriel Pichardo, Breanna Stebbins, and Kyle Bear; 2. Alexis Corazzini and Kelly Taylor; 3. Sarah Haage and Natalie Zoef; 4. Geoff Counihan and Emma Nguyen; 5. Dave Bates, James Bridges, and Samantha Beaulieu; 6. Lindsey Itzkowitz, Dan Russell, and Danielle Russell; 7. Jonathan Reifler and Chas Wagner; 8. Elinor Mason and Amy Jacobs; 9. Katrina Wallace and Thiago Fiorotti; 10. Casey Pola, Karen DeVincent, Ashley Willis, and Matthew Swift; 11. Katie Massey, Liesl Grebenstein, Ana Lizcano, and Diana Lizcano.






photos by melissa ostrow

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the good party at goodwill headquarters



1. Ashley Bernon and Bryan Rafanelli; 2. Celia Shea and Brad Nichols; 3. James Harder and Melissa Massello; 4. Darryl Settles and Clayton Turnbull; 5. Waseem Givens and Tanya Dowdy; 6. Alisha Collins and Linsey Onishuk; 7. Amy Cavilla and Jeff Bellows; 8. Carol and Rick Ishkanian; 9. Kate Weissman and Elena Hozdic; 10. Ashley Brozenich, Kat Cuseo, and Tim Gough; 11. Oriana Conklin, Katie Semanski, and Michael Oliver.



photos by michael young







the urban grapeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s two-year anniversary at the bokx pool at hotel indigo 1. Hadley and TJ Douglas; 2. Josh Childs and Will Willis; 3. Chelsea Bell and Mark Goldberger; 4. Vanessa Spilios and Kerry Carven; 5. Jamie Curtis, Rebecca Willson, and Michelle Gubitosa; 6. Benjamin Brudner and Emma Snider; 7. Ellen Scelfo and Michael Scelfo; 8. Amanda Smedstad, Morgan Diamant, and Lisette Diamant; 9. Meg Abrams and Katrina Hart; 10. Robert and Catherine Whitehill, Benjamin Bouton, and Tara Conley; 11. Peter and Emily Webster, and Donna and Dave Garlough.






PHOTOS BY michael young

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Brian Coleman’s STUFF Brian Coleman has a record collection that would make even the most wellstocked DJ swoon. The marketing maven, writer, and hip-hop fiend runs his own PR and event-management agency, Good Road, which works with artsy clients, especially musicians. It’s clear music consumes him off-hours, too. Coleman owns a collection of rare vinyl worth tens of thousands of dollars, stashed away in a subterranean man cave. He surfaced to discuss his favorite tunes, his high-school concert memories, and the Fat Boys. Let’s say your home bursts into flames. Which records would you save? There are certain items that are trophies and certain ones that you play. Death Mix by Afrika Bambaataa is probably the one that I love the most because it’s both. It is an incredible record, and it’s rare. As a collector, the original I have is special to me: it looks rare, and it basically came out in 1983, when hip-hop was becoming more of a studio art form. But Death Mix is a cassette tape made at a live event that they put on vinyl. It presented hip-hop in its most raw and original form, as a live thing. Also, if you hold it, the vinyl is thick. It’s a hefty record to hold in your hand. I also love it because Afrika Bambaataa’s name was spelled three different ways; it’s hip-hop and all its warts. What was your first concert? It was 1985 or 1986 — I was 15 or 16 at the time. There was a club in Trenton, New Jersey, called City Gardens. I believe it was Dirty Rotten Imbeciles. When you’re that young, your only social interaction is school. [A concert] is a clique of likeminded people coming together, a sense of community 180 degrees from anything I felt in social interactions. I didn’t like high school; I don’t think most people did. It was an escape. It was something very energizing. What makes Boston a great music city? I think that Boston has an edge, and you’re kind of free. We don’t try to compete with New York or LA or any <46> 7.17.12

of the big music cities. It frees you up to be more independent and do what you want to do. Not the pressure of, “I want to get signed. A rep could be at my show at any time. Am I playing the right clubs?” There’s a working-class aesthetic: “I’m going to make the best music and the best art I can, and screw whatever else happens.” It’s less pretentious overall. What are your favorite clubs? I’m a bit of a curmudgeon with clubs. The Middle East is my favorite; they have always been huge supporters of the scene. It’s an institution, and it’s still kind of a family-owned place. How’s business? There’s one thing not up on my website [] yet: I’m starting a record label. It will debut before September. We’ll be small-scale at first, vinyl only. I can’t talk about the artists on it yet, but the first couple of artists are established Boston musicians and groups who are presented in different ways. Do people really still want albums? Yes! There’s a beautiful thing that I am thrilled about: a local company called Traffic Entertainment, based in Malden, and another label, kind of part of that orbit, called Get on Down — the people who run these labels are old friends of mine, and they specialize in really unique packaging. They have re-mastered the first Fat Boys album — remember them? — and done the liner notes with all these extra photos and old posters. It’s presented in a mini pizza box. As much as people find it convenient to have iTunes, it goes against human nature. What’s your favorite song? “Bring the Noise” by Public Enemy. That record still blows my mind when I hear it. It certainly did in 1987. I get excited by the same music now that I did at 17. I prefer to think of it as, you know, “I liked it then, and it still has that same power and timeless quality.” You could also say it’s immaturity.

— Kara Baskin

PHOTO BY michael diskin

Elaine and Jerome Rosenfeld

summer 2012 Enjoy an evening under the stars in the music-filled Calderwood Courtyard

The Campbell Brothers

The Campbell Brothers July 11

Ghost Train Orchestra

Prepare yourself for a “sound as hot as brimstone that kicks holy butt” (NPR). Get your groove on with electric steel-guitar driven gospel music.

July 18

Celebrate with “music from the heart of the Jazz Age that still has a raucous immediacy” (The Boston Phoenix).

Ghost Train Orchestra

Animal Hospital Ensemble

August 1

Oliver Mtukudzi and the Black Spirits

A herd of guitarists, string players, and drummers forge “an intense beauty” ( Boston Globe) through layered loops and meticulously crafted melodies.

July 25

Experience a rare, intimate performance with this Zimbabwean superstar whose husky voice shakes the trees.

Oliver Mtukudzi

Patty Larkin August 2

Don’t miss this perennial favorite—“a virtuoso guitar player and mood shaper . . . whose mature work is comparable to the best of Bonnie Raitt and Lucinda Williams” (The New York Times).

Animal Hospital Ensemble

Red Baraat


Freshlyground August 15

You heard their hit song with Shakira during the 2010 World Cup. Join South Africa’s legendary Afro-fusion band for a dance party that crosses cultures and generations. Patty Larkin

Pokey LaFarge and the South City Three

Red Baraat

August 22

August 29

Newport Jazz Festival favorites play a mix of original hits and early jazz, string ragtime, country blues, and western swing.

For more information, visit /concerts.

“One of the best party bands around, Red Baraat plays rollicking funk music steeped in northern India’s wedding celebrations, with a dash of DC go-go beats and hip-hop” (NPR). Pokey LaFarge and the South City Three

Sponsored by Staples, Inc.

Media sponsor is The Boston Phoenix.

Music 2012  
Music 2012  

A Lineup of Must-See Acts | Fstival Fashion | Local Bands You’ll Love